Skip to content Skip to navigation

Digital Humanities Across Borders (DLCL 204)

The 2019 "Digital Humanities Across Borders" class would like to invite you to a poster session featuring their final projects, tutorials, and ongoing work.

If you're at or near Stanford, please join us in person on Thursday, March 14th from 1:30-2:50 in Lathrop 180 for posters, cookies, and conversation about doing digital humanities work in languages other than English.

If you're elsewhere in the world, posters are available on this page, and other materials (e.g. brief write-ups of other projects) may become available over the next several days. You can tweet your questions and comments using the hashtags for each project, and the students will respond (and tweet their own commentary) during the live poster session on March 14th, 1:30-2:50 PM (Pacific Time, UTC-8).

Didi Chang-Park, Spanish: "How to Read a Poem: Networks in “Muerte de Narciso”"
view poster (PDF), ask questions/comments with #dlcl204 
#redlezama, or email didip [at] stanford [dot] edu

What does it mean to read a network representation of a poem?


Michaela Coleman, Spanish: "Juárez Revisited: Comparative Analysis of Violence Against Women in 2666 and Huesos en el Desierto"
view poster (PDF), ask questions/comments with #dlcl204 #juarezrevisited, or email mjcole [at] stanford [dot] edu

This project aims to examine the representations of the 90’s era femicides in Juárez, Mexico from both fictional novel perspectives and investigative journalistic approaches.


Quinn Dombrowski, Russian: "The Magical Word Vectors of Harry Potter and Tanya Grotter"
view poster (PDF), ask questions/comments with #dlcl204 #russianwizards, or email qad [at] stanford [dot] edu

The Harry Potter series is a global phenomenon, having been translated in over 70 languages. Two years after Harry Potter was officially translated into Russian, Dmitry Yemets released the first book in the Tanya Grotter series. While the first book in the series mirrors tropes found in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (a mistreated orphan living with relatives is whisked away to a school for magicians), the choices to use a female protagonist and antagonist, locate the story in Russia, and draw secondary characters from Slavic and Greek mythology result in a distinctly different story.

Time Warner sought to obtain a cease and desist order in the Netherlands, where the first translation of Tanya Grotter was to be published, after being rebuffed in Russian courts. Yemets and his publisher argued that Tanya Grotter was a parody, a protected class of derivative works, and that Harry Potter itself drew heavily on folklore. Nonetheless, Time Warner won the case, preventing the official translation and distribution of the Tanya Grotter series outside of Russia.

Can computational text analysis bring a new perspective to the question of how to quantify the similarity between the magical worlds of Harry Potter and Tanya Grotter? This project uses word vectors as way of comparing these fictional worlds.


Melissa Hosek, Chinese: "Locating Lu Xun: A Spatial Analysis of his Short Stories"
view poster (PDF), ask questions/comments with #dlcl204 #locateluxun, or email mhosek [at] stanford [dot] edu

Lu Xun, the father of modern Chinese literature, is known for using a dual-narrator and first-person perspective of an “outsider” to create the critical lens through which his short stories are composed. While scholars have taken interest in this narrative form, few have questioned where these intradiegetic narrators come from and what kind of place they recount experiences from. This project rises to the challenge of introducing spatial analysis to the corpus of Lu Xun research. I ask whether there are any meaningful patterns to be observed in the selection of setting locations and movement of characters across the short stories. If so, do they contribute to the exploration of “wandering” (彷徨, lit. “to walk back and forth, undecided--the central theme of his second collection of works?

The project as it stands today reflects my initial findings after looking at three of Lu Xun’s most notable stories: “A Madman’s Diary,” “Kung I-chi,” and “My Old Home.” I use R, Cytoscape, and Palladio to visualize the who, what, where, and when of characters’ movement.


Ricky Huang, Chinese: "熊仔: Taiwanese Rap Music"
Jupyter notebook for counting repeated tones; ask questions/comments with #dlcl204 #tones #taiwaneserapmusic #熊仔, or email yehtang [at] stanford [dot] edu

Tones are such an integral element of the Chinese language, and although they seem to melt into the flow of the music when the words are sung, I have been curious about how they might indirectly affect the flow itself. Therefore, I have run a tone analyzer on a couple of Taiwanese lyrics texts to identify patterns with more than two consecutive words in the same tone, in hopes that I can detect some noticeable correlation between the tone-patterns of the lyrics and the pitches in which the words are sung. Throughout the process, I have found that rap music offers more flexibility than other forms of music for singers to play around with the tones, and that the rap artist 熊仔 really takes advantage of this linguistic feature. In his songs, he would often adjust his flow to the tone groupings of his lyrics, not essentially to mimic the tones with musical pitches, but to build upon the musicality of the Chinese language. These findings have opened my eyes to a novel aspect of Chinese-language music that I hope to continue examining. 


Antonio Lenzo, Italian: "Il Lavandino Johnny: or, how word2vec could have worked on the novels of Beppe Fenoglio but did not, or, why your corpus better be in English and large enough if you’re going to use word2vec!" - view poster (PDF), ask questions/comments with #dlcl204 #illavandinojohnny, or email alenzo [at] stanford [dot] edu.

I originally intended to employ word vectors to study Italian twentieth-century writer Beppe Fenoglio’s treatment of gender in his semi-autobiographical portrayal of the Italian Resistenza.

Yet, my project has failed so far; the results I am currently getting are uninteresting, or maybe the way I am reading them is. In many ways, word2vec has only shown me what was already clear; Fenoglio’s world is bleak, patriarchal and violent.

So, I decided to flip the narrative for my poster, and speak about what went wrong. At any rate, I have learned a lot, and I still have high hopes for the future: I will continue working with word2vec and I plan to try fastText too!